Stars v Panthers
0 - 3
The Nottingham Panthers looked to make it a four point weekend, following a 6-2 victory over the MK Lightning on Saturday night, as they made the long journey north to Dundee for their final league game before Christmas on Sunday.
Michael Garnett got the start in goal for the Panthers, who were without Marek Tvrdon (lower body), Alex Bolduc (upper body), Kevin Henderson (upper body) and Jon Rheault (lower body), opposite Pontus Sjogren for the Stars.
The Panthers found themselves on an eary powerplay when Matt Marquardt was sent to the penalty box after just seven seconds but couldn't take advantage as the Stars penalty killers kept them away from Sjogren's goal. The powerplay came to a premature end as Brett Perlini was called for interference (1.43) but the Panthers and Michael Garnett stood firm before returning to full strength.
Shortly after a big hit along the boards by Jaynen Rissling, Panthers prospect Jordan Kelsall on the receiving end, the Panthers took the lead when Dylan Richard (7.49) tipped home Gui Lepine's blast from the blue line.
Brett Perlini had a chance to double the Panthers' lead but Sjogren made himself big to deny the GB forward as he shot from the slot.
As the Stars pushed for an equaliser Michael Garnett had to be alert, not once but twice, as the home side buzzed around his cage before Tim Billingsley (19.33) gave the Panthers a two goal lead as the period wound down. Robert Lachowicz finding the defenceman, filling in up front with Tvrdon & Bolduc on the sidelines, all alone in front of Sjogren and he made no mistake finding the twine in close.
Dylan Richard went in search of his second of the game early in the second period but Sjogren continued to provide stubborn resistance as he held onto the wingers shot. Down the other end Michael Garnett had to once again be sharp to keep the Panthers' two goal lead in tact as the Stars worked the puck inside.
With Robert Lachowicz in the box for slashing (29.25) Garnett was once again called into action, throwing his blocker at a blast from the point to send the puck out of play before the Panthers returned to full strength.
After killing a high-sticking penalty against Alex Guptill (32.19) the Panthers came close to a three goal lead but, after a quick review, it was determined the puck didn't enter the Stars' net after a goal mouth scramble and the period ended 2-0 in favour of Nottingham.
Dundee looked for a route back into the game in the third but once again found Michael Garnett in top form as he managed to locate, and cover, a loose puck at the top of his crease. The Panthers' netminder was once again called into action as the period past the midway point, this time flashing the leather at full stretch to make a highlight reel worthy glove save from a one-timer at the top of the left wing face-off circle.
Luke Pither sealed the game for the Panthers when he skated down the left wing and ripped a laser of wrist shot past Sjogren in the Stars goal (53.57) to make it 3-0. There was still time for Garnett to make a blocker save, after a shot from the slot caught him by surprise, and Ollie Betteridge to throw himself in front of a slapshot inside the final minute to preserve the third shutout of the season for Garnett and send the Panthers home with the two points.